|7th Druk Desi|
Samten Tenzin, better known as Umze Peljor, (died 1707) was the 7th Druk Desi or head of government of Bhutan from 1703 until his death. Inexperienced as a politician and of mild character, Peljor served as little more than a co-ruler to the more powerful Gyaltsab (head of state) Kuenga Gyaltshen. Feeling overwhelmed by the factional strife at court, Peljor eventually retired to Chagri Monastery in 1705. For the last years of his life, he remained only nominally in office while effectively living as monk.
Before his rise to Druk Desi, Peljor served as Umze or precentor at the state monastery, and was thus skilled at religious matters but completely unprepared for a high-ranking governmental office.Appointed ruler after the unexpected death of his predecessor Ngawang Tshering in 1703, Peljor effectively shared his power with the much more influential and powerful Kuenga Gyaltshen, who officially acted as Gyaltsab. As Peljor's reign was also short and obscure, the historian Tenzin Chögyal regarded him as little more than a figurehead, and John Ardussi called him "a virtual nonentity". Pema Tshewang, however, believed Umze Peljor to have been a "easygoing and peaceful character, who ruled righteously", while Karma Phuntsho considered him a "politically naive", but "mild" ruler.
During Umze Peljor's reign the power struggle between the dzongpens Tenpa Wangchuk of Punakha and Druk Rabgay of Thimphu began, resulting in widespread factional strife. Unable to deal with the political imbroglio among the government, Peljor retired to Chagri Monastery in 1705, effectively ceding his remaining power to Kuenga Gyaltshen. Nominally, however, he remained in office until his death in 1707.
After Umze Peljor's death, Druk Rabgay became the first lay Druk Desi, ending the monk rule over the country. Murdering his rivals and Kuenga Gyaltshen, he ushered into a chaotic and violent period of Bhutanese history.
Bhutan's early history is steeped in mythology and remains obscure. Some of the structures provide evidence that the region has been settled as early as 2000 BC. According to a legend it was ruled by a Cooch-Behar king, Sangaldip, around the 7th century BC, but not much is known prior to the introduction of Tibetan Buddhism in the 9th century, when turmoil in Tibet forced many monks to flee to Bhutan. In the 12th century, the Drukpa Kagyupa school was established and remains the dominant form of Buddhism in Bhutan today. The country's political history is intimately tied to its religious history and relations among the various monastic schools and monasteries.
The Gelug is the newest and currently most dominant sect of Tibetan Buddhism. It was founded by Je Tsongkhapa (1357–1419), a philosopher and Tibetan religious leader. It is known as the Yellow Hat sect. The first monastery he established was named Ganden. The Ganden Tripa is the nominal head of the school, though its most influential figure is the Dalai Lama. Allying themselves with the Mongols as a powerful patron, the Gelugpa have emerged as the pre-eminent Buddhist school in Tibet and Mongolia since the end of the 16th century.
Jigme Dorji Wangchuck was the 3rd Druk Gyalpo of Bhutan.
Ngawang Namgyal and known colloquially as The Bearded Lama, was a Tibetan Buddhist lama and the unifier of Bhutan as a nation-state. In addition to unifying the various warring fiefdoms for the first time in the 1630s, he also sought to create a distinct Bhutanese cultural identity separate from the Tibetan culture from which it was derived.
Articles related to Bhutan include:
Zhabdrung was a title used when referring to or addressing great lamas in Tibet, particularly those who held a hereditary lineage. In Bhutan the title almost always refers to Ngawang Namgyal (1594–1651), the founder of the Bhutanese state, or one of his successive reincarnations.
The House of Wangchuck has ruled Bhutan since it was reunified in 1907. Prior to reunification, the Wangchuck family had governed the district of Trongsa as descendants of Dungkar Choji. They eventually overpowered other regional lords and earned the favour of the British Empire. After consolidating power, the 12th Penlop of Trongsa Gongsar Ugyen Wangchuck was elected Druk Gyalpo, thus founding the royal house. The position of Druk Gyalpo is more commonly known in English as King of Bhutan.
Chagri Dorjeden Monastery, also called Cheri Monastery, is a Buddhist monastery in Bhutan established in 1620 by Ngawang Namgyal, 1st Zhabdrung Rinpoche, the founder of the Bhutanese state.
The Second Tibetan Invasion of Bhutan or the Second Battle of Simtokha Dzong was a military confrontation in 1634 between the supporters of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal and the forces of the Tibetan Tsangpa dynasty and several Bhutanese lamas allied against him. The latter initially conquered Zhabdrung's seat, Simtokha Dzong, threatening to eliminate his young dominion. The castle's ammunition stores were accidentally ignited during the battle, however, resulting in an explosion that destroyed Simtokha Dzong and much of the Tibetan army. Seizing this chance, Zhabdrung's followers rallied and ousted the Tibetans from their territory, turning the battle into a decisive strategic victory of Ngawang Namgyal, paving the way for the Unification of Bhutan under his rule.
The Druk Desi was the title of the secular (administrative) rulers of Bhutan under the dual system of government between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries. Under this system, government authority was divided among secular and religious administrations, both unified under the nominal authority of the Zhabdrung Rinpoche. Druk, meaning "thunder dragon", refers symbolically to Bhutan, whose most ancient name is Druk-yul. Desi, meaning "regent", was the chief secular office in realms under this system of government.
Tenzin Rabgye (1638–1696) was the fourth Druk Desi who ruled from 1680 to 1694. He is believed to have been the first to have categorized formally the zorig chusum. In 1688, he renovated Tango Monastery, approximately 14 kilometres from Thimphu. In 1692, he was first formally categorized during the rule of Tenzin Rabgye (1680–1694), the 4th Druk Desi. In 1692, he visited the sacred cave of Taktsang Pelphug during the Tsechu season and founded a temple there devoted to Padmasambhava. The temple is known as Taktsang Lhakhang and was completed in 1694.
Paro Taktsang, is a sacred Vajrayana Himalayan Buddhist site located in the cliffside of the upper Paro valley in Bhutan. It is one of thirteen Tiger's Nest caves in historical Tibet in which Padmasambhava practiced and taught Vajrayana.
The Tango Monastery is a Buddhist monastery located 14 kilometres (8.7 mi) to the north of the capital city of Thimphu in Bhutan, near Cheri Mountain. It was founded by Phajo Drugom Zhigpo in the 13th century and built in its present form by Tenzin Rabgye, the 4th Temporal Ruler in 1688. In 1616, the Tibetan lama Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal meditated in its cave. The self-emanated form of the wrathful Hayagriva is deified in the monastery. It belongs to the Drukpa Kagyu School of Buddhism in Bhutan.
Tenzin is a Tibetan given name, meaning "the holder of Buddha Dharma". Tenzin can alternatively be spelled as Tenzing and Stanzin as well. Stanzin is generally used by Ladakhi people, since Ladakhi language retains many archaic forms which have been lost in other modern Tibetan languages. For example, in Standard Written Tibetan, 'Tenzin' is spelled as "bstan'zin"; however, when it is spoken, both the 'b' and the 's' are silent in Standard Lhasa Tibetan. It may refer to any of the following people:
The Dual System of Government is the traditional diarchal political system of Tibetan peoples whereby the Desi coexists with the spiritual authority of the realm, usually unified under a third single ruler. The actual distribution of power between institutions varied over time and location. The Tibetan term Cho-sid-nyi literally means "both Dharma and temporal," but may also be translated as "dual system of religion and politics."
Desi Jigme Namgyal of Bhutan is a forefather of the Wangchuck Dynasty. He served as 48th Druk Desi of Bhutan (1870–1873), and held the hereditary post of 10th Penlop of Trongsa. He was called the Black Ruler.
Pagsam Wangpo, a key figure in the history of the Drukpa Lineage of Tibetan Buddhism, was born at Chonggye, in the Tsang province of Tibet a natural son of the prince of Chonggye, Ngawang Sonam Dragpa. He was an elder cousin of the 5th Dalai Lama, Ngawang Lobzang Gyatso (1617-1682).
Lopen Karma Phuntsho is a Bhutanese scholar who specialises in Buddhism, Tibetan & Himalayan Studies and Bhutan, and has published a number of works including eight books, translations, book reviews and articles on Buddhism, Bhutan and Tibetan Studies. His The History of Bhutan has been called "the first book to offer a comprehensive history of Bhutan in English" and received Choice Outstanding Academic Title Award in 2015.